New Member Profile – Ryan Villanueva

Ryan Villanueva
  • Nickname

    I just go by Ryan, but at Burning Man they call me Lion Teacher

  • Where are you from?

    I’m from “the OC” — Orange County, California

  • Favorite food

    Craft beer, my favorite brewery around here is Trillium

  • Hobbies

    Bouldering — it’s like rock climbing without a rope

My company is called Best Delegate, and we help high schools and middle schools build Model United Nations programs. In Model UN, students get to step into the shoes of world leaders, where they research global issues, develop public speaking and negotiation skills, and learn how to lead. I participated in Model UN throughout high school and college, and the skills I gained helped me get into Yale, win $20,000 in scholarships, and launch my career. I worked at Goldman Sachs as a liquidity risk analyst from 2008-2010, before I decided to leave Wall Street and build a company around a Model UN blog I started from my college dorm room called “bestdelegate.com.” Today, Best Delegate is the world’s leading resource for Model UN with 700,000+ annual website visitors — I lead a team of educators who work with schools all over the world — and we empower students to become leaders through Model United Nations.